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Feedback requested on a new hypothesis on the origin of atheism
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15-09-2016, 06:44 AM
RE: Feedback requested on a new hypothesis on the origin of atheism
(14-09-2016 11:34 PM)Stevil Wrote:  n agent.
But this ain't true.

We have it in us, the ability to observe and pattern match, to assume purpose or perhaps to interpret "purpose" to mean what is the main use of this. e.g. the main use of wings is to fly, the main use of eyes is to see.

By no stretch of the imagination does this mean "But we are born with belief in...design in nature from an agent"

If you believe, like children often do, that a pointy rock exists so that porcupines have somewhere to scratch their backs on, you ascribing design in nature. Giving objects of nature intrinsic purpose, a telos. Indicating that they exists for the sake of some purpose or function.

Here's a quote, that might help unclutter your thoughts here:

"Aristotle believed that everything on Earth has a purpose, a telos. The acorn is intended to grow into an oak, a knife is intended to cut, a baker is intended to bake. As human beings are the only animals that reason, it is our telos to reason; it is our purpose. If we live according to our purpose, we will be living virtuously and will consequently be happy.

There are two types of telos: intrinsic telos and extrinsic telos. Intrinsic telos suggests that the aim of the organism is inherent in its nature, an acorn is innately programmed to grown into a tree. Extrinsic telos refers to a purpose imposed by an external force, such as a deity.

Not all modern views hold that life has a purpose, however. In the Darwinian view of natural selection, genetic variations happen by chance and persist only if they turn out to be adaptive, if they promote the survival of the species. We reason not because it is our telos but because we happen to have evolved that way. Our capacity to reason helped our species to survive."

Wings don't exist for the purpose of flying, they were a genetic variation that happened by chance, and persisted only because of natural selection, and the fact that they turned out to be adaptive.

They no more existe for the sake of flying, than the quarter I found on the floor, exists so that I could buy coffee.

"Tell me, muse, of the storyteller who has been thrust to the edge of the world, both an infant and an ancient, and through him reveal everyman." ---Homer the aged poet.

"In Him was life, and the life was the Light of men. The Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it."
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15-09-2016, 08:46 AM
RE: Feedback requested on a new hypothesis on the origin of atheism
(15-09-2016 06:44 AM)Tomasia Wrote:  Wings don't exist for the purpose of flying, they were a genetic variation that happened by chance, and persisted only because of natural selection, and the fact that they turned out to be adaptive.

Wings started out as feathered limbs that were used to cover egg clutches and keep them warm. Longer, thicker feathers meant more eggs survived, etc.

Eventually, the feathers were long and thick enough to have a beneficial effect when the animals moved. Better jumping leads to more food, better survival rates, etc. which leads to bigger and better wings.

And now we get to clean bird shit off our cars...

Help for the living. Hope for the dead. ~ R.G. Ingersoll

Freedom offers opportunity. Opportunity confers responsibility. Responsibility to use the freedom we enjoy wisely, honestly and humanely. ~ Noam Chomsky
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15-09-2016, 09:31 AM
RE: Feedback requested on a new hypothesis on the origin of atheism
(14-09-2016 04:55 AM)Tomasia Wrote:  That's seem silly, we have trouble with the distinction between what's constitutes as natural vs supernatural, so not sure why you want to suggest that animals draw such a distinction.

The only people that have trouble distinguishing the natural from the supernatural are theists. And that's one of the major differences between theists and atheists; the former seriously believe in the supernatural.

Quote:You claim that animals possibly do have beliefs, can you give us an example of a belief than non-human animals possibly.

Nope. Try again. Nobody said animals "do have beliefs". That's simply another of your many misrepresentations.

Quote:And I'd suggest that whatever picture of reality that forms in a non-human animal, would be entirely spiritual like in form, just like for early humans. Animals might not label their perceptions as abstract, but the fact that whatever perception of reality is rendered in their minds, makes it such. Mental images that don't particularly operate under the laws the physics, anymore than our dreams do.

This is nothing more than meaningless drivel. And you don't yet seem to understand that "spirits" and the "spirit world" are nothing more than human-constructs, or fantasies, or in your case wishful thinking.

I'm a creationist... I believe that man created God.
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15-09-2016, 09:37 AM (This post was last modified: 15-09-2016 12:01 PM by Aliza.)
RE: Feedback requested on a new hypothesis on the origin of atheism
(14-09-2016 10:01 PM)Randy Ruggles Wrote:  
(10-09-2016 08:54 PM)Aliza Wrote:  To me, that’s a huge problem.

Okay, so I’m not especially familiar with the NT, but if I were a Christian, I’d be highly suspicious of things that are contradictory to my source document.

BTW, the term “old testament” is indeed offensive to a Jewish audience. The term was given to the Hebrew Bible to make it seem… well… “old” and outdated. You may, of course, continue to call it whatever you wish. I will know what you’re referring to, but it’s akin to me referring to the NT as the “fraudulent testament”.


We can certainly say that according to the Torah, the foundation upon which Christianity claims to have been built, worshiping G-d is not a requirement given to non-Jews. These are the seven laws of Noah, which we arrive at through reading the Torah.

1. Do not murder.
2. Do not steal.
3. Do not worship false gods.
4. Do not be sexually immoral.
5. Do not eat a limb removed from a live animal.
6. Do not curse God.
7. Set up courts and bring offenders to justice.

The atheists may not accept the authority of my book, but I’m not the one attempting to compel them to believe in G-d. This is not required of them to believe in the first place and for that reason, it’s kind of problematic that you’re basing your argument on the Hebrew Bible (which you are).

Further, they really shouldn’t accept the authority of the Hebrew Bible because it’s not their book (if the atheists in question are Jews, then it is their book, and you can leave that up to the Jewish community to address.) The Torah wasn’t given to the gentile’s ancestors… it’s not their legacy. Why should they accept the word of something that they have no tradition of accepting? It’s really not their business and no, the Jewish people are not willing to share the Torah with the general public. It was taken from us and misused (as is evidenced by the existence of Christianity).

And for the record, no Jews studying and adhering to any form of Judaism accept the Christian explanation for Satan. In Judaism, Satan is an angel who is completely under the authority of G-d. To suggest otherwise is the same as saying that G-d is somehow limited and capable of losing control and authority; a concept which is totally against Jewish thinking.

I don't think any Christians believe that Satan is beyond God's control. God is allowing Satan to have his way temporarily but he will ultimately be brought to justice. Do you believe that? And do Orthodox Jews take the story of Job to be history or allegory? What about the creation account(s)?

About the Christian view of Satan, I’ll have to take your word for it. I’m not exactly in a position to speak with any authority on what Christianity believes. I will say, however, that when I’ve pointed out my perceived discrepancy in the past, I’ve never had anyone challenge it.

I’ve been taught that the story of Job is allegorical, but I’m sure there are some educated Jews who take it as literal. Honestly, I think its primary purpose is to explain to Christians how the Jewish view of Satan differs than the Christian view.

Regarding the Jewish view of creation, according to traditional Jewish teachings, Torah and science must equate. If the science is in and the Torah’s description of creation doesn’t match the science, then we must have misunderstood the Torah. Maimonides said that around 1,000 years ago.

Traditional Judaism teaches that the universe is +15,000,000 years old and expanded from the something the size of a mustard seed. It also teaches that Adam was the first man with a soul, but he was not the first man. There were 974 generations of man before Adam. The six days of creation are outside of the Jewish calendar, which records that we’re almost six thousand years from the life of Adam. It also teaches that the six days are really 15,000,000 years. (With that said, I have still met Jews who hold by a six day creation model, but I’m not aware of how they work their model into the above Jewish teachings.)

This article from the Huffington Post does a good job of summing the Jewish position up.

“These [1,000 – 2,0000 year old Jewish] sources depict an origin of the universe that is clearly, and uncannily, similar to that of modern cosmology and quite unlike the views of some “fundamentalist” religions out there. And when these sources have in the past conflicted with the cosmological thinking of the time, it is often the science that has evolved to an understanding closer to that of the religious.”

To our delight, modern science has shown that the universe is around 15,000,000 years old and that it expanded from a single, tiny point. We also learn that many humans lived prior to 6,000 years ago and the scientifically accepted order of “creation” matches the order accepted by Jews, as recorded 2,000 years ago in the Talmud.

Edit: I meant that the universe is 15 billion years old. Thanks, Grasshopper!
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15-09-2016, 10:11 AM
RE: Feedback requested on a new hypothesis on the origin of atheism
Quote:To our delight, modern science has shown that the universe is around 15,000,000 years old and that it expanded from a single, tiny point.

As usual, Randy, you are well inaccurate again. By a factor of a thousand this time, 13, 800, 000, 000 years near enough. Our ball of rock has been around for about 4, 500, 000 000 years and has bourn life for about 3, 800, 000, 000 years.

Tomorrow is precious, don't ruin it by fouling up today.
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15-09-2016, 10:20 AM
RE: Feedback requested on a new hypothesis on the origin of atheism
(14-09-2016 09:15 PM)Randy Ruggles Wrote:  I just wanted to point out that, although some were offended by my example of comparing a sociopath and his lack of empathy to an atheopath and his lack of belief, there actually might be a correlation. A major study shows that atheists lack empathy and exhibit many of the traits of sociopaths (or, as they call them here, psychopaths).

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/a...study.html

A classic misrepresentation of the thrust of the article. Did you not think we'd take the time to read it? A few snippets...

"It found atheists are more likely psychopaths and believers less clever... To believe in a supernatural god or universal spirit, people appear to suppress the brain network used for analytical thinking... there are some similarities between atheists and psychopaths in that they both lack empathy for others... The researchers said that while having empathy does not necessarily mean a person has anti-scientific beliefs, it may 'compromise' an individual's ability to cultivate social and moral insight."

Quote:"However, they point out research that shows between 1901 and 2000, 90 per cent of Nobel Prize winners in science were religious, while the rest were atheists, agnostics or freethinkers."

Are you really silly enough to draw a meaningful correlation from this? Here's another just as meaningful one...

[Image: 2.png]

I'm a creationist... I believe that man created God.
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15-09-2016, 10:47 AM
RE: Feedback requested on a new hypothesis on the origin of atheism
(14-09-2016 09:48 PM)Randy Ruggles Wrote:  [...]
"In Rorschach ink-blot studies, for instance, believers tended to see images that weren't there and non-believers tended to miss images that were present."

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/technolog...le4313359/

Uh... Rorschach ink-blots? Really?

Associate professor of psychology at Emory University in Atlanta, Scott O. Lilienfeld, who co-authored the book "What's Wrong with the Rorschach?" is one of many psychologists who doubts the validity of the test. Lilienfeld, James M. Wood of the University of Texas, and Howard N. Garb of the University of Pittsburgh surveyed more than 50 years of research and studies on the scientific evidence for the Rorschach, concluding that it is "weak at best and nonexistent at worst."

Lilienfeld et al pointed out that studies show that about half of the normal Rorschach test-takers will be labelled as having "distorted thinking." This staggeringly high false-positive error rate—among many other problems—suggests that the Rorschach should be relegated to the pile of once-promising but now-discredited psychological tests. It seems that the test has remained in use more out of tradition than good evidence. "Whenever possible," the authors conclude, "forensic and clinical evaluations should be based on more dependable assessment techniques, such as structured psychiatric interviews and well-validated self-report indexes."

I'm a creationist... I believe that man created God.
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15-09-2016, 11:18 AM
RE: Feedback requested on a new hypothesis on the origin of atheism
How nany more barrel bottoms do you have left to scrap, Randy?

Out of context quotes, less than reputable newspaper, inaccuracies of dating, film makers, fellow creationists, opinion and myth offered as fact . . .

Tomorrow is precious, don't ruin it by fouling up today.
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15-09-2016, 11:45 AM
RE: Feedback requested on a new hypothesis on the origin of atheism
(15-09-2016 06:44 AM)Tomasia Wrote:  If you believe, like children often do, that a pointy rock exists so that porcupines have somewhere to scratch their backs on, you ascribing design in nature.

Nope.
Seeing that a pointy rock can be useful for something is not "ascribing design".

Children don't know, until they are told, what porcupines are like, that they have itchy backs ( Weeping ) and that pointy rocks can be useful.

Insufferable know-it-all.Einstein God has a plan for us. Please stop screwing it up with your prayers.
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15-09-2016, 11:46 AM
RE: Feedback requested on a new hypothesis on the origin of atheism
(15-09-2016 10:11 AM)Gloucester Wrote:  
Quote:To our delight, modern science has shown that the universe is around 15,000,000 years old and that it expanded from a single, tiny point.

As usual, Randy, you are well inaccurate again. By a factor of a thousand this time, 13, 800, 000, 000 years near enough. Our ball of rock has been around for about 4, 500, 000 000 years and has bourn life for about 3, 800, 000, 000 years.

Hmmm... Your quote is from Aliza, not Randy, and she's talking about the universe, not the earth. I think she just forgot the last three zeros. 15 billion years is in the right ballpark for the age of the universe. To avoid ambiguity (I believe "billion" is not interpreted the same way by Americans and Brits), I will rephrase that as 1.5 x 10^10 years.
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